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Tribe of Reuben, you will live,
even though your tribe
    will always be small.[a]

The Lord will listen to you,
tribe of Judah,
as you beg
    to come safely home.
You fought your enemies alone;[b]
    now the Lord will help you.

At Massah and Meribah Spring,[c]
the Lord tested you,
    tribe of Levi.
You were faithful,[d]
and so the priesthood[e] belongs
    to the Levi tribe.

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Footnotes

  1. 33.6 even though. . . small: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  2. 33.7 beg. . . alone: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
  3. 33.8 Massah and Meribah Spring: See Exodus 17.1-7; Numbers 20.1-13.
  4. 33.8 the Lord tested you, tribe of Levi. You were faithful: Or “the Lord tested me. I was faithful” or “the Lord tested Aaron and me. We were faithful.”
  5. 33.8 priesthood: The Hebrew text has “your thummim and your urim,” objects that were used by priests to get answers from God.

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